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Heaven having granted me success in making the Philosopher's Stone, 
after having spent thirty-seven years in seeking it, stayed awake at 
least fifteen hundred nights without sleep, suffering innumerable 
miseries and irreparable losses. I have decided to offer to youth, the 
hope of the future, the heart-rending picture of my life. This may 
serve both as a lesson and at the same time help the young to turn 
away from an art that at the first sight may offer the most delightful 
white and red roses that, however, are surrounded by thorns and of 
which the path that leads to the place where one can pick them is full 
of pitfalls. 

The universal medicine being a far greater blessing than the gift of 
riches to know it naturally attracts studious men who believe them- 
selves to be happier than the multitudes. This reason has influenced 
me to transmit to posterity the processes to be undergone in the 
greatest details, without leaving out anything at all, in order to let 
it be known and to prevent the ruin of honest people and to render a 
service to suffering humanity. 

The reader who understands my processes will only have to seek the 
Matter, the Fire, and the Labors of Hercules. Duty has forced all 
philosophers to make a mystery of this. I have sworn to Almighty God 
to carry this secret into the grave and will not be perjured, were I 
even to be stoned, as I prefer to displease men rather than the 
eternal . 

I have honestly described all the processes that have to be 
undertaken, on this you can count. I have hope from the depths of my 
heart that what I have dreamed will reveal to virtuous man, if so 
called by God, how to rejoice in such blessing, helping them to avoid 
the numberless traps, even to the possibility of losing his very life. 

The greatest care is needed to pass the Labors of Hercules. Once they 
are passed the rest is a very agreeable work that does not cost one 
cent in money. 

Be very careful that it does not happen to you, as it did to me, to be 
wounded. As a result of these varied labors I find myself with the 
most essential organ of life affected, which means that I shall be 
denied, considering the seriousness of the illness, enjoying a long 
life, the virture of the medicine not being surgical, but only 
medicinal . 

I would advise those who insist on treading the path that leads 
towards the Philosopher's Stone, only to begin their journey after 
having followed several courses in chemistry so that they will know 
how to manipulate. Whatever many authors may say, if I had not had the 
knowledge of chemistry that I do possess, I would never have reached 
the goal. 

- 1 - 

I must add that the matter proper to the work is that which served to 
form the body of primitive man. It is to be found everywhere and in 
varied forms. Its origin is both divine and terrestial, equally so the 
fire of the stone. 

The Universal Medicine is a magnetic salt that serves as a covering 
for a strange energy, universal life. As soon as this salt reaches the 
stomach it penetrates the whole body to its ultimate limits, 
regenerates all its parts, brings about a natural crisis followed by 
abundant sweat— ings, purifies the blood as well as the body, 
strengthens this matter instead of weakening it, through dissolving 
and chasing away by perspiration all morbid matter which would impede 
the play of life and its currents. This salt, due to its cold quality, 
also makes disappear every kind of inflammation while the mysterious 
energy of this same salt spreads itself throughout the principal 
organs of life, settles there while vivifying them. This is the effect 
of the Universal Medicine which medically cures all infirmities that 
may affect man throughout the course of his life. It allows him to 
exist for several centuries in good health, unless, due to his 
constitution, God has ordered otherwise. This effect is quite contrary 
to the opinion we obtain from doctors who insist that one remedy only 
cannot cure all illnesses. But if they were cognizant of the Universal 
Medicine they would see that the power of this salt is similar to that 
of a magnet that attracts not in this case iron, but the energy of 
universal life for which it acts as a covering. In administering it, 
they would be forced to recognize its celestial power, and they would 
fall onto their knees before this beautiful magnetic salt endowed with 
such miraculous and supernatural power and at the same time would 
declare from the depths of their hearts that no illness can resist its 
action. Of this I have been able to convince myself by giving back 
life to many sick people already abandoned by doctors. 

To understand what I have just said regarding this strange power 
within the medicine more clearly, one should observe the effects of 
champagne in our stomachs. As soon as it enters the stomach, its 
liquid penetrates the walls and strengthens them. At the same time, 
its unknown energy, due to the presence of carbonic acid, is freed and 
rises to the brain, chases away our sorrows and makes us feel gay 
unless, of course, too large a quantity of this gas starts pressing on 
the brain and makes us stagger or fall. 

We must realize that the body of man is material; nevertheless, it 
contains a power and energy which is foreign to it. This energy is 
life . 

At this point, I must warn you never to forget that only two matters 
of the same origin are needed: One volatile, the other fixed. That 
there are two ways, the dry and the humid. I personally follow the 
latter by preference and by duty, though the former is familiar to me. 
It is done with only one matter. 

- 2 - 

The azoth unites easily with sulphur, fire with fire, and the double 
mercury or rebis in powder or sale or oil forms the true potable gold 
or the Universal Medicine in white or red. Finally the seed of gold 
lies within the gold itself. 

Few combustibles are necessary; even less receptacles . The work costs 
very little to undertake and can be performed in any place, but it is 
convenient to begin it with that of nature in order to finish it well. 
I thought in this book to retain the most important passages from 
several works written by those philosophers who have best grasped the 
secret mercury, that is to say, Hermes, Arnold of Villanova and the 
anonymous author printed in Leipzich in 1732 and others, so as to 
transmit in a primordial manner this most precious and divine art 
relating to health. 

Seek to know the Vinegar of the Mountains because without it you can 
do nothing. Its knowledge will give you that of the fairy of the soul 
so called by Arnold of Villanova in his Little Rosary. 

Also, consider deeply that the fire of our hearths, that of the 
furnaces, or of a lamp is the tyrant of destruction and that nature 
only uses the common fire in order to destroy. For example, the fire 
of lightning or that of the volcanos. 

Remember that, after their preparation, the two metallic natures 
cannot be reunited, but only in the state of dissolved germs, as is 
told by Arnold of Villanova. 

Having well understood the practice and the workings that I am going 
to give you, you can apply yourself to the task of doing the great 
work. If you do not have the good luck to succeed, it is that God does 
not wish to grant you such a gift, because I swear to you that I have 
told iyou everything in this book, without betraying my oath. 


Having passed thirty-seven years of my life studying the phenomena of 
nature, I believe it my duty to publish a part of my discoveries so 
that the pains and unhappinesses I have experienced may be avoided by 
those other good honestpeople who are interested in serving suffering 
humanity. Born of a beloved mother and of a father who was both re- 
spectable and highly educated and who held an honorable place in 
society, I was the only son and my father was my teacher. He gave me a 
careful education. From my earliest days I was held up as a model to 
the youth of my city, because of my behavior, my tastes for arts and 
sciences and my education. I was barely seventeen years of age when 
already I could live independently from the fruits of my talents. My 
father was in correspondence with scientists, among which were some 
who busied themselves searching for the Philosopher's Stone and were 
students of the occult science of things. Their books had fallen into 
my hands. I was imbued by them and said to myself: Is it possible that 
kings, princes, philosophers, presidents of the court and religious 
people would have taken pleasure in lying and in spreading error among 
their fellow men? No, it is impossible, I answered myself. These are 
rather ancient knowledge hidden within the language of hieroglyphics 
so that the comon people be deprived of it and that only the elect, 
whom God would please to initiate, would be allowed to possess this 
supernatural knowledge. I was, by nature, good and a believer. I was 
simple and did not know the twistings of the human heart. I believed 
in the sincerity of these books . I could hardly wait to become my own 
master so that I could devote myself entirely to this type of study. 
From my point of view, life only had charm so long as one was 
possessed of health and could ~make others happy without their being 
able to speak about you. The knowledge of the Philosopher's Stone 
would achieve this goal. It became the main consideration of my waking 
moments and of my leisure. My ambition was also to obtain the 
certainty that the soul existed and was immortal. Such was the 
knowledge I wished to acquire, even if it meant losing my very life. 

The French Revolution had just burst forth. My knowledge seemed, in 
the eyes of my co-citizens, more useful in an administrative post than 
in the army. I was honored with several posts. During one of my tours, 
I saw when entering a small town a beautiful young lady whose 
appearance of goodness, sweet smile and air of general decency charmed 
my soul and inflamed my heart. At that very moment I resolved to make 
her my wife. After having fulfilled my mission I busied myself in 
finding a pretext to speak to her. Love was not lacking and not many 
days passed when the moment came that I received permission to visit 
her. Finally she accepted me and I promised to make her the happiest 
woman in the World. Alas! I was a long way from believing that I would 
be the cause of her experiencing a series of unprecedented miseries 
when considering that she did everything to make me happy. 

- 4 - 

A few months after my marriage, I made the acquaintance of a talented 
man whose wife was a famous artist. They were both interested in 
alchemy and trusted me with a little manuscript that had been found 
behind a closet. They were deeply impressed by this manuscript. It was 
written in a style that inspired a great deal of confidence. 

Everything was to be found there, with the exception of the name of 
the Matter, of the Labors of Hercules and the knowledge of the Fire. I 
had felt I had reason to believe myself the happiest man on Earth. In 
the hotheadedness of youth, I became to conceive immense projects. I 
put myself to work which made me neglect my profession and personal 
needs. I then decided to resign from my post in order to be able to 
concentrate on Hermetic philosophy and within a few years I had used 
up all the money that my father and mother had given me upon my 
marriage and also a part of my wife's dowry had been flown up the 
chimney . 

My unlimited love and friendship for the companion of my youth and her 
tender feelings for me provided us with a large family that increased 
my expenses as my personal fortune diminished. I saw my wife bravely 
putting up with her situation and the desire to render her happy 
greatly increased my firm resolve to achieve the goal upon which I had 
decided. Twenty-one years passed thus in a state of constant hardship. 
I fell into the deepest misery. My many friends now turned their backs 
upon me. Everyone lost interest in me, though some tried to discover 
why I had fallen into this sad state, especially considering my 
exemplary conduct. It came to light that my taste for alchemy deprived 
me of even the basic necessities. I became an object for public 
laughter. I was treated as a madman. I was booed. My family rejected 
me and on several occasions I found myself wandering over the country, 
obliged to interrupt my work, having sold even the best of my clothes 
in order to pay the wages of a servant who helped me pass my nights. 

My wife, burdened with many children, was obliged to take refuge with 
her parents, yet never ceasing to be a model of all the virtures. And, 
looking into the depths of my heart, I found nothing with which to 
reproach myself beyond my taste for a work that had ruined me and 
placed my family in such a painful situation. 

I found it necessary to forget my work and to sell my talents, but the 
poor situation in which I stood made me unwanted. Hardly had I 
organized some advantageous deal that my subordinates or some people 
who furnished funds seized them, then seeking to discredit me so that 
I could find no help. After about ten years has passed thus and having 
made use of a part of every night reading practically all the works 
published on the Philospher's Stone, my head beginning to be bowed by 
the weight of years, I began to feel the irrestible drive that reminds 
man of his first loves. In good faith, I suddenly believed myself 
better instructed than others and capable of overcoming all the 
obstacles that had stopped me heretofore. I had recourse to rich 
people of similar tastes. I was received in a very friendly manner. I 
passed happy days during the early days with these new acquaintances. 
Friendship was lavished upon me and I could now, to some extent, come 
to the help of my family. However, as soon as they 

- 5 - 

thought that they had obtained all that I knew from me, I was 
abandoned with futile excuses. It even happened that some went to the 
point of giving me a strong dose of corrosive sublimate to destroy me 
and steal my writings . I learned to know the human heart at great 
cost. I had to keep wide awake all the time. But the fire which 
manifested in my stomach and the taste I recognized immediately, made 
me run to an antidote. This resulted in a year of discomfort and being 
almost deprived of the only pleasure that I knew on earth. In order to 
avoid importunating the reader and being accused of wordiness, I shall 
avoid a recital of the more petty human passions that I observed and 
the inconceivable differences that exist between the pleasant man one 
meets decorating the evenings in our drawing rooms and the same man 
controlled by the lure of riches and by his own vile cupidity. They 
are truly two different people. 

I do not wish to pursue the recital of what happened to me. A 
description of the misfortunes that befell me would require a large 
volume. I once more fell into hardship. It was such that my numerous 
family, made up of charming well educated children, virtuous beyond 
expression by their decency and their talents were so unhappy because 
of the misfortunes of their father that they caught what in others 
would have been but slight diseases and, after a couple of weeks, 
these diseases became fatal for them. In a short while I lost my 
children . 

Oh irreparable loss ! How sad and heartbreaking it is for the paternal 
heart to be able to weep but tears and to feel only superfluous 
regrets ! May the Eternal one day allow me once more to see you again 
and then the memory of my misfortunes will be erased for me. 

Despite the broken-down condition in which I found myself, I decided 
to re-gather my strength in order to make one last effort. I went to 
see a rich person who was endowed with a great soul and equally great 
culture. For several years I was treated by her in a most generous 
manner. Far more generous than the others whom I had met in the past. 

I managed in the end to produce something encouraging, but it was not 
yet the true work. 

One day as I had been walking in the country and was now sitting at 
the foot of a large oak tree, I took pleasure in bringing to my mind 
all the circumstances of my life and trying to judge whether I had 
some merit whatsoever or if I had deserved the huge weight of 
hardships that had brought me low. I remembered the discoveries I had 
made for commerce and the benefits that French industry had obtained 
from them. It was painful to see that strangers had profited and my 
name had been forgotten. I remembered the people who had had the skill 
to take advantage of all of their discoveries after given them a more 
fashionable form. They were covered with honors well situated while I 
was wandering and rejected. I asked myself if I had ever intentionally 
robbed one cent from any one of my fellow men and my conscience 
answered in the negative. Did I for one moment cease being a good son, 
good husband, good father, a good friend to those who deserved it? My 
heart answered me again: No, your unhappiness stems only from not 
having achieved your goal . 

- 6 - 

I brought to mind that it had been a cruel thing that so many times I 
had been so ill paid by my fellow men, even by my friends. I felt 
broken down by the pain of these memories. My strength and energy left 
me and I put my head on my hands and a very torrent of tears poured 
forth, as at the same time I called the Eternal to my help. That day 
it was very hot, so that I fell asleep and then dreamed a dream that I 
shall never forget. 

I thought that I heard split the true at whose feet I was sitting. The 
sound made me turn my head. I saw a nymph, a very epitome of beauty 
emerging from this tree. Her clothes were so diaphanous that they 
seemed transparent. She said to me: "From the heart of this holy tree 
I have heard the repetition of your misfortunes. There is no doubt but 
they were great, but such is the fate toward which ambition leads a 
youth who seeks and who believes himself able to face all dangers in 
order to satisfy his desires. I shall add no comment in order not to 
aggravate your misfortunes which I can ease. My essence is celestial. 
You can even consider me as a ray from the pole star. My power is such 
that I animate everything. I am the astral spirit. I give life to 
everything that breathes and vegetates. I know everything. Speak what 
can I do for you?" 

"0 celestial nymph, " I said, "you can reanimate in me a heart beaten 
down by hardship by granting me only some slight idea regarding the 
organization of the universe, regarding the immortality of the soul 
and give me somehow the means that I may achieve to a knowledge of the 
Philospher' s Stone and the Universal Medicine. I have become an object 
of public laughter. My back is bent under the huge weight of miseries. 
For pity's sake deign give me the means to rehabilitate myself in my 
own eyes . " 

"I am truly touched by your sorrowful existence," she answered me. 
"Listen. Gather all your faculties and engrave into your memory what I 
am going to tell you. At the same time, take a part of my comparisons 
as figurative, in order that I may be able to make myself 
understandable to your intelligence." 

"Place before your mind an immense space, almost without limits, 
within which floats this system of worlds composed of suns, of fixed 
stars, of nebulae, of comets, of planets and satellites, all swimming 
within the breast of eternity, all within the light of a divine sun 
whose rays are without limits and you will have some slight notion of 
the totality of the universe, as well as both the finite and the 
infinite world." 

"This system of worlds and of the Eternal or the sun of divine light 
are all of the same origin. They have had neither beginning nor will 
they have an end. The slight changes that certain globes experience 
changes nothing in the order of the universe." 

- 7 - 

"The will of the Eternal or of the Creative Spirit can at will hurl a 
nebula into space. This going off at a tangent while flying through 
space is subject to the law of attraction of any sun to which it has 
drawn near and finishes by describing a very elongated eclipse whose 
two nuclei are determined by the action of the two suns. Then it is 
transformed into a comet but at the end of a lapse of centuries it 
finishes by giving way to the attraction of the stronger of the two 
suns. Its course becomes regular and finishes by making part of its 
own solar system by turning in circles around it. Then after a certain 
number of centuries its two luminous points become one point only, one 
luminous point that becomes the central fire of this globe, which 
itself becomes at a very, very distant time a planet habitable as soon 
as it had taken on a certain metaliferous consistency. Then it brings 
to birth on its surface the elements necessary to the life of the 
animals proper to its nature, such for example as water and atmosphere 
and vegetables." 

"The planets can, by a powerful expansion of the central fire, tear 
themselves into different parts, each of which spreading out into 
space, becomes also a satellite that is attached to the active 
atmosphere of some other planet." 

"A comet which, in the first place, was a nebula can, by its effect 
when drawing too near to a planet, raise its waters and give rise to a 
flood by a lowering or raising its axis. This changes the bed of the 
seas and brings to light that which was covered by the waters and 
hidden for centuries under them such as inhabited countries which are 
recovered from the ooze of the sea bottom raising at the same time the 
debris of animals and of vegetables packed tightly one upon the 
other . " 

"Another planet, passing through the tail of a comet, may have its 
atmosphere so burnt up that not only all animal and vegetable life is 
destroyed, but the planet itself is transformed into a vast tomb. 
Finally, a comet, by its excessive action when drawing near to a 
planet, can cause such a disturbance on it that animal and vegetable 
life may be greatly modified, even destroyed. These are the only 
alterations that happen to the globes, but, for all that, nothing in 
the world is lost. Were these globes to be reduced to atoms, these 
last, by the law of magnetic attraction, would end up by bringing 
forth a new planet." 

"The various species of animals that seemed to have existed in the 
world at distant successive epochs, are the facts of the creation 
brought about by the Creative Spirit. But, all the beings who come 
from these appear at epochs more or less distant the one from the 
other. They seem to be the results of great catastrophies that 
happened to the earth. The human species itself only seem to date 
about sixty centuries." 

"The suns, the comets and the various planets are as much beings of a 
specific nature that find themselves definitely ruled by a spirit. The 
universal hierarchy is infinite. The Eternal belongs to a category far 
above these spirits. These latter are, as it were, its ministers and 
the planets, the globes, its subjects that have to submit to the 
directives of the same ministers." 

"Everything that exists in the universe that is material or physical 
or purely mineral, even the gases, note this avowal. 

"Man is triune, His body or his shape is animated by a soul. This is 
the junction of diverse forces by the help of which the spirit 
imprints its shape or matter. The soul is directed by the Celestial 
Spirit which is an emanation of the divine action and, consequently, 
imperishable . 

"Only man's form perishes. The spirit for which the soul serves as a 
tie or an envelope, separates itself and man's form, deprived of this 
vital celestial spirit, is delivered to the reaction of its 
constituent principles. Spirit and soul live then spiritually in 
seeking the centers that are suitable to them and, after the lapse of 
a certain time, man or the being or the spirit or the spiritual life 
which goes on always perfecting itself, separates itself from his soul 
or from his glorious envelope to enter into its universality. This 
means that man dies twice. That is to say, twice changes his form. But 
man or the spirit lives eternally. From what I have told you, you can 
now no longer doubt the immortality of the soul. 

"This is all that I am allowed to teach you now to satisfy your 
desires. "Now do you want to know how the Universal Medicine acts on 
the animal economy? Consider as I have just told you how only man's 
form is mortal and you will see that only the solid aspect perishes. 

As these latter are all mineral, all can be regenerated by the 
principle or mineralizing spirit which, by its various modifications, 
forms the various products we know. They are all returned to their 
primordial state by the action of this same principle and by its 
mysterious power which re-establishes the balance and allows the 
spirit freely to enter and to leave through 

•our proper form just as water passes through a sponge. Because the 
upsets of our body only come, excepting mechanical disturbances, 
because the currents of life cannot circulate freely. But the virtue 
of the Universal Medicine is purely medicinal and not surgical. It 
cannot replace an amputated limb or one that is entirely destroyed, 
which means that the person who takes it in good time, generally at 
the two equinoxes, can live without infirmities for several centuries 
unless nature has predestined a short duration of his life due to his 
physical make-up which never ceases to combat the efforts of life. 

"Let us now come to this matter of all your miseries and, if I dare 
say so, of your fixed point. Your obstinacy was required in order to 
make you worthy of such good fortune. Listen attentively and never 
forget your hardships so that throughout your life you will always 
remember those who are unfortunate. Follow me and fear nothing." 

I then saw a cloud that seemed to emanate from the center of the 
earth. We were wrapped in this cloud and it carried us into the air. 

We wandered along the seashore on which I noticed small humps. Night 
came. The sky was covered with stars. We followed the Milky Way, 
directing ourselves toward the pole star. An extreme cold caught hold 
of me and 

- 9 - 

brought on a deep sleep. Warmed afterwards, due to the rays of the sun 
that began to appear on the horizon, I was very astounded on waking up 
to find myself on the earth and here to notice a temple. The nymph 
took me by the hand and led me to its entrance. 

"You have now arrived," she told me, "at the spot where you must 
resolve the following problem. As you have been a good mathematician, 
reflect well because you can do nothing without solving it. From one 
by one which is only one are made three, from the three, two, and from 
the two, one. 

"You have told me that you have been educated in chemistry. Look and 
see what means your knowledge can offer simply to open the lock of the 
door of this temple in order that you may penetrate into its very 
sanctuary . 

"A victory won without danger," she said, "is a triumph without glory. 
Before leaving I must once more point out to you that you can only 
battle the dragon that defends interiorly the entry of this temple, 
with this spear which you must make red hot by the aid of a comon fire 
in order to pierce the body of the monster which you must fight and to 
penetrate right to its very heart. This dragon has been well described 
by the ancients and they have spoken of it on many occasions." 

"Think of the dew of May. It becomes indispensible as vehicle and 
principle of all things." 

I looked at her; the nymph began to smile. "At last you will begin the 
labors of Hercules. Collect all your energies and be of firm will. 
Adieu." The nymph took my hand and squeezed it. "Do you love life?" 
she said to me. 

I answered her, "In your presence I cherish it more than ever." "Try 
not to lose it as a result of imprudence. Waiting for the results of 
the battle I shall be watching by you and in case that anything 
happens, I shall come and help you. Adieu." She disappeared. 

I was so sad to have lost this nymph who had now become so dear to me. 
Finally I made up my mind and made ready for the battle. Having 
collected branches of dry wood that were scattered on the spot where I 
found myself, I lit them with the help of a lens that I found to be on 
me and heated my spear almost white hot. While doing this, I sought 
the means which would best destroy the lock on the door of the temple. 
I noticed that the nymph had slipped into my pocket without my 
noticing it a corked flask full of the substance that was necessary to 
me . 

Determined to win or to perish, I furiously seized my spear with one 
hand and the substance in the other and put a sufficient quantity of 
this latter on the lock. In a little while the lock disappeared 
entirely and the two leaves of the door to the temple opened with a 
loud noise. My eyes fell on a fierce dragon who was endowed with an 
enormous three pointed tongue with which he sought to throw his fatal 
breath on me. I hurled myself towards him crying out: 

- 10 - 

"When one has lost everything, when one has no more hope, life becomes 
a disgrace and death a duty." 

He opened his huge jaws to devour me, at which I hurled my spear with 
all my strength so that it pierced through his throat, deep into his 
entrails. I tore out his heart and, so that he could not reach me, at 
the same time, I made crude efforts with the help of my spear to turn 
away the direction of his head. The monster curled up on himself 
several times, vomited waves of blood and ceased to exist. 

Following this I walked to the heart of the temple and there heard a 
celestial voice speak, saying to me: "Audacious one, do you dare 
profane this temple in order to satisfy your vile cupidity, or do you 
come here in order to seek the means to help suffering humanity?" 

I answered, "I come free from all ambition to pray on my knees for you 
to grant me only the return of the fortune that I have sacrificed in 
order to know the Philosopher's Stone. Also the means so that I can 
secretly help virtuous human beings. I swear to you, and I swear it 
before the Eternal, that if you deign to accord me such a boon, I 
shall never reveal the Labors of Hercules nor the Matter nor the Fire, 
except by means of a language that could only be understood by those 
whom God would wish to trust with such a secret and if I am perjured, 
may I be punished in the proper manner." 

I then saw two superb crystal vases each resting on a pedestal made of 
the most beautiful marble of Earrara. 

One of these vases had the shape of an urn surmounted by a gold crown 
with four fleurons. On it had been engraved the following words: 

Matter containing the two metallic natures. 

The other crystal vase was sealed with a glass stopper. It was very 
thick and on it was engraved similarly that which now follows: Astral 
spirit or ardent spirit which is a projection from the pole star. 

This vase was adorned with a silver crown decorated with nine 
brilliant stars. 

As I finished reading, I noticed with great joy my sweet nymph who 
said to me in showing me the large flask, "Do you see my mirror? 
Nothing," she said to me, "can put itself in opposition now from your 
rewarding yourself for the struggle that you have sustained with so 
much courage while taking at will the substances that are contained in 
these two sacred vases which are of the same celestial origin. I 
noticed the discomfort that your victory is causing you. This could 
become dangerous to you if you stay too long in this place. Hasten to 
take your reward and leave this temple with all possible speed. I 
shall prepare everything for our departure." She left me alone. 

- 11 - 

My strength and courage began to wane. I felt I must obey the orders 
of the nymph. I noticed at the sides of the two sacred vases various 
empty flasks, very neatly made in crystal and corked with glass 
stoppers. I took two of them, opened hastily the first vase in the 
form of an urn that contained the androgyous matter and the two 
metallic natures and filled my container with it. After having sealed 
the crystal urn, I opened the second and larger vase and tremblingly 
poured into my second flask some of the substance that it contained. I 

had no funnel. Time lacked, my strength was failing, I quickly closed 

the large vase and my own with its crystal cork and hastened from the 
temple. In passing near to the monster I had conquered, I saw that 
nothing was left of him except his mortal form which was of no value 
whatsoever . 

No sooner had I come out into the fresh air than I thought that I 
would faint. Fearing to break my two vases through falling, I lay down 
on the earth with great caution having been careful to place my two 

flasks beside me. For a few moments I found it hard to breathe. My 

cherished nymph came to me, smiling. She congratulated me on my 
courage and on the victory I had just won. She said to me, "Be sure, 
unfortunate Cyliani, that it is not good to expose yourself frequently 
to such a battle. What am I seeing?" she said to me, "A school!" 

Her words struck me. I said to her, "Explain yourself." 

"One of your vases," she said, "seems to hold more androgynious matter 
than you will need, but you have not taken enough of the Astral 
Spirit. You need infinitely more. And, as Arnold of Villanova said, it 
is necessary to have an abundance of water, of distilled spirit, but 
your fault is excusable. It is the result of a valid fear. At any 

rate, you have enough to teach you how to make the Stone and how to 

achieve all your -desires. Let us now hasten to return to our point of 
departure. You do not seem to be thinking any more of the companion of 
your youth, nor of the anxiety into which your absence has plunged 

her. Let us go. Here your life will be in danger." 

I saw a new cloud come out of the center of the earth. We soon found 
ourselves wrapped in it and lifted into the air. We made good speed. 
Night overcame us . The sky was without a cloud and well covered with 
stars. We again followed the Milky Way, but in a contrary direction, 
then began to feel extremely cold. Our direction was also on the side 
of the place which saw my birth. But, in leaving a cold region and in 
passing into a hot region, I felt a deep sleep overcome me and was 
astonished when I woke up at the aurora at sunset, to find myself at 
the foot of the large oak from which we had left. 

I called to my amiable nymph and she said to me, laughing, "What do 
you want more?" 

Then I replied, "Tell me what it is necessary for me to do in order to 
finish my work." 

- 12 - 

"Now that you have passed the Labors of Hercules and that you possess 
the Matters, it is nothing more than a work that could be done by a 
woman or careful and attentive child. Listen closely." 

"Observe the working of nature. In the center of the earth she has 
formed the metals, but something else is necessary -- their 
quintessence. Observe from whence she draws the quintessence of 
things. It is only on the surface of the earth, in the kingdoms that 
live or vegetate. Just follow nature, step by step. Consider also how 
she functions in the vegetable kingdom, because it is not a mineral 
that you are going to make. Observe how she dampens with dew or with 
rain the seed that has been entrusted to the earth. How she dries it 
with the aid of celestial fire and reiterating thus until the embryo 
is formed, developed, buds, flowers, grows and as it reaches its 
multiplicative virtue. Finally, it matures as fruit. It is very 
simple. Dissolve and coagulate. That is all. And be very careful not 
to use any other fire than that of heaven." 

Finally the nymph was so kind as to designate everything that I still 
had to do, as I shall tell in the greatest detail. I threw myself at 
her feet to thank her from such an unparalleled blessing while 
offering my humble thanks to the Eternal for having allowed me to 
overcome so many dangers. Then she said goodbye to me, adding, "Do not 
forget me . " 

She disappeared. Her flight made me experience such great pain that I 
woke up. 

A little later I started my work again, now aided by the Labors of 
Hercules. I was able to produce the matter than contains the two 
metallic natures, as well as the Astral Spirit. This with the help of 
my last resources and not those of other times. This made me free to 
handle my success as I would towards those who deserved it in my eyes, 
without hurting my sense of delicacy or my comfort, nor bringing out 
unnecessary gratitude. 

-k -k k -k -k 

- 13 - 


I first took some of the matter that contained the two metallic 
natures. I began by imbuing it, little by little, with Astral Spirit 
in order to awaken the two interior fires, which were as it were put 
out, by lightly drying and stirring the whole with a circular movement 
by the heat of the sun. Then, reiterating thus and frequently damping 
more and more, drying and stirring, to the point that the matter had 
taken on the aspect of a slightly thick porriage. 

Then I poured on top of it a new quantity of Astral Spirit, just 
enough to cover the matter and left the whole in this condition for 
five days, at the end of which I adroitly decanted the liquid or the 
solution, which I then kept in a cold spot. Then the matter that was 
left over I dried in the heat of the sun, in a glass vase which was 
approximately three fingers in height. I imbued, I stirred, I re-dried 
and dissolved as I had done before and reiterated thus until I had 
dissolved all that it was possible to dissolve, having been careful to 
pour each solution into the same well-sealed vase which I then put for 
ten days in the coldest place that I could find. 

When ten days had passed, I put the whole solution to ferment in a 
hold-fast for forty days at the end of which, as a result of the 
internal heat, it precipitated, as a result of the internal heat of 
the fermentation, a black matter. 

~It is then that I distilled, to the best of my ability, the precious 
liquid that floated on top of the matter containing its interior fire 
and placed it in a vase of white glass, well stoppered, in a place 
that was both humid and cold. 

I took the black matter and dried it in the heat of the sun, as I have 
already said: Reiterating the imbuings with Astral Spirit, but 
stopping immediately that I noticed that the matter was beginning to 
dry up and thus leaving it to dry out by itself. This was done as many 
times as was necessary so that the matter could become as a shining 
black pitch. Then the petrification was total and I stopped using the 
exterior fire so as not to damage the matter through burning the 
tender soul of the black earth. By this means, the matter came to 
imitate horse manure. It was necessary according to what we are told 
by the philosophers to let the interior heat of the matter act upon 
itself . 

It is now necessary to begin again, using the exterior fire, in order 
to coagulate the matter and its spirit. After having allowed it to dry 
itself, one imbues it little by little with its distilled reserved 
liquid which contains its own fire. The matter crushed should be 
imbued and dried by a light solar heat until it has absorbed all its 
water. By this 

- 14 - 

means, the water is entirely transformed into earth and this latter, 
through a process of dessication, changes itself into a white powder 
that we also call air. This falls like a cinder containing the salt or 
the Mercury of the Philosophers. 

During this first procedure one sees that the solution or water is 
changed into earth and this by a form of subtilization or sublimiation 
transforms itself into air by means of the art and here is where one 
stops the first work. 

By means of the new Astral Spirit, one dissolves this ash little by 
little leaving, after the solution and the decanting, a black earth 
that contains the fixed sulphur. But in reiterating the operation on 
this last solution, exactly as we have described, an earth is obtained 
that is even whiter than the first time, which is called the first 
eagle. One reiterates this process seven or nine times. By this means 
one obtains the Universal Menstruum, or the Mercury of the 
Philosophers or the Azoth with the aid of which one extracts the 
active and personal energy of each body. 

It is here good to observe that, before passing from the first eagle 
to the second as well as to the following, it is important to 
reiterate the preceding operation on the ash that has been left, if 
the salt is not sufficiently elevated by the central fire of the 
matter to the philosophical sublimation, so that nothing is left after 
the operation other than a black earth from which its mercury has been 
removed . 

Be very careful here to note that following the swelling of the matter 
during the process of fermentation that follows the solution that at 
the upper part of the matter a sort of skin forms on which are to be 
found a mass of little bubbles which contain the spirit. It is at this 
point, that the fire must be led in a prudent manner as the spirit 
tends to take on an oily form and passes to a certain degree of 
ciccisity . 

As soon as the matter is dissolved it swells up, begins to ferment and 
gives out a slight noise which proves that she holds within herself a 
vital germ which frees itself in the form of bubbles. 

In order properly to undertake the process I have just described, it 
is necessary to observe the weights, the control of the fire and the 
size of the vase. The weight must consist in the quantity of Astral 
Spirit necessary for the solution of the matter. The handling of the 
external fire must be directed so that the bubbles that contain the 
spirit do not evaporate in too large a quantity and do not burn the 
flowers or the sulphur by continuing the external fire so do not push 
the drying of the matter too long after its fermentation and its 
putref ication in order not to see the red before the black. 

Finally the size of the vase must be based on the quantity of matter, 
so that the vase only contains a quarter of its capacity. Do you 
understand me? 

- 15 - 

Also do not forget that the mysterious solution of the matter or the 
magical marriage between Venus and Mars takes place in the temple of 
which I spoke to you previously on a fine night with a calm cloudless 
sky, the sun being in the sign of Gemini, the moon being in its first 
quarter at its full with the help of the magnet which attracts the 
Astral Spirit from the heavens. It is seven times rectified to the 
point that it can calcine gold. 

Now the first operation being ended, one has the Azoth or the White 
Mercury or the cell or the Secret Fire of the philosophers. From this 
point on certain sages dissolve it the least quantity of Astral Spirit 
necessary to produce a thick solution. Having the solution, they place 
it in a cold place in order to obtain the three layers of salt. 

The first salt has the aspect of wool. The second of a niter with very 
small points and the third is a fixed, alcaline salt. 

Some philosophers use them separately; others bring them together as 
is pointed out in A. de Villanova in his Petit Rosaire written in 
1306, in the article on the "Two Leads" and dissolves them in four 
times their weight of Astral Spirit in order to achieve all their 
operations . 

The first salt is the veritable Mercury of the Philosophers. It is the 
key that opens all the metals by the aid of which one extracts their 
tinctures. It dissolves everything radically. It fixes and ripens all 
equally while fixing the bodies by its cold and congealing nature. 
Briefly it is a very active universal essence. It is the vase in which 
all philosophical processes are undertaken. One thus sees that the 
Mercury of the Wise is a salt which is named dry water which does not 
wet the hands, but to make use of it, it must be dissolved in the 
Astral .Spirit, as we have already said. One uses ten parts of mercury 
against one of gold. 

The second salt serves to separate the pure from the impure and the 
third salt serves continually to increase our mercury. 

~k -k -k ~k ~k 

- 16 - 


The tincture extracted from common gold is obtained through the 
preparation of its sulphur which is the result of its philosophical 
calcination that causes it to lose its metallic nature by changing it 
into a pure earth. This calcination which cannot-take place by means 
of the common fire but only by using the Secret Fire existing within 
the Mercury of the Wise, because of its dual nature. And, it is by 
virtue of this Celestial Fire-supported by trituation which penetrates 
into the center of common gold-that the dual central fire of gold, 
mercurial and sulphurous, which is found therein as if dead and im- 
prisoned is now discovered to be untied and animated. The same 
Celestial Fire, after having extracted the tincture of the gold, fixes 
it by means of its cold and coagulating quality. It then becomes 
perfect, capable of multiplying itself in both quality as well as 
quantity. This earth having reached a state of stability takes on the 
color of peach blossom, which gives the tincture or the fire which is 
then the vital and vegetative gold of the wise. This takes place by 
means of the regeneration of the gold through our mercury. 

It is now necessary to dissolve the comon gold into its spermatic 
matter by means of the water of our mercury of our Azoth. 

In order to reach this point the gold must be reduced to a very pure 
calx or oxide of a browny-red color. After having washed it over a low 
fire several times with well distilled rain water, it is necessary to 
dry it lightly by the heat of the sun. Then we calcify it by means of 
our Secret Fire. It is upon this occasion that the philosophers say: 
"The chemists burn with fire and we with water." 

After having soaked and lightly crushed the oxide of well calcined 
gold and having it drink its own weight in salt, or dry earth which 
does not wet the hands, and having well incorporated them together 
from now they are wetted by successively increasing the dampings to 
the point that the whole resembles a slightly thick pap. Then place on 
top of this a certain quantity of water of mercury, proportionate to 
the matter, to the point that it just covers this last. The whole is 
now left for five days within the gentle heat of the water bath of the 
wise. At the end of this time the solution is to be decanted into a 
well stoppered vase and which will be kept in a damp and cold place. 

The matter that has not been dissolved is then to be taken and left to 
dry in a heat similar to that of the sun. Once it is dry enough, the 
frequent dampings and triturations are started once again in the same 
manner as previously indicated, in order to obtain a new solution 
which will be reunited with the first. Repeat in this manner until you 
have dissolved everything that can be and nothing is left except the 
dead earth, which is of no value. The solution being finished and 

- 17 - 

in the well-sealed vase of which we have already spoken, its color 
should be the same as that of a lapis lazuli. This vase is to be 
placed in the coldest possible place for about ten days. Then the 
matter will be allowed to ferment as we have already said in the first 
procedure and, by the proper internal fire of this fermentation, a 
black matter will be precipitated. This matter is to be distilled 
skillfully and without fire by putting the liquid separated by the 
distillation which floated on top of the black earth into a well 
sealed vase in a cold place. 

Take the black earth, separated by the distillation of its liquid, and 
allow it to dry by itself. From now on it is permeated by the external 
fire: that is to say, by the Philosophical Mercury seeing that the 
philosophical tree requires to be burned by the sun from time to time 
and then refreshed by water. 

It is then necessary to alternate the dry and the damp in order to 
hasten the process of putrefaction. Once it is noticed that the earth 
is begin-fling to dessicate, the imbuings are stopped and then one 
leaves it to dry itself until it reaches a suitable state of dryness 
and one repeats in this manner until the earth appears like black wax. 
Then the putrefaction is perfect. 

We must now remember what was said during the first procedure in order 
not to allow the spirit to volatilize or to burn the flowers by 
stopping the external fire in good time as soon as the putrefaction is 
total . 

The black color that is obtained at the end of forty or fifty days 
every time that the external fire has been well cared for is a proof 
that the common gold has been changed into a black earth and this the 
philosophers call their horse manure. 

In the same way as horse manure acts by the power of its proper fire, 
so, by parallel, our black earth dries its proper oily dampness by 
means of its own double fire and converts itself after having drunk 
all its own distilled water and become gray into a white powder which 
is called air by the philosophers . This constitutes coagulation as we 
have already described regarding the first procedure. 

Once the matter is white, coagulation having ended, it is fixed by 
taking the matter to a greater state of dessication by the help of the 
external fire, following the same procedure as in our former 
coagulation, until the white color is changed into a red color that 
the philosophers call the element of fire. The matter reaches a very 
high degree of fixity by itself, to the point that it no longer fears 
the attacks of the external or ordinary fire which can no longer be 
prejudicial to it in any way. 

Not only is it necessary to fix the matter as we have just 
demonstrated, but it is also necessary to lapidify it by taking it to 
the point that it has the appearance of crushed stone by using an 
ardent fire, that is to say, the first fire used, and following the 
same means as previously described in order to change the impure part 
of the matter into a fixed earth and in depriving the matter also of 
its saline humidity. 

- 18 - 

Then we go on to the separation of the pure from the impure parts of 
the matter. This is the last degree of regeneration which terminates 
in the solution. 

To arrive at this point, after having well crushed the matter and 
having it in a subliminatory vase, as we have already said, of three 
or four fingers in height, thick as ordinary glass, some mercurial 
water is poured over it. This is our Azoth dissolved in the quantity 
of Astral Spirit which is necessary to it and as previously indicated 
by graduating its fire in such a manner as to maintain a temperate 
heat and giving it, at the last, a quantity of this matter. By this 
means we transmit all the spiritual part of this last into the water 
and the earthy part sinks to the bottom. The extract is now decanted 
and placed in ice in order that the oily quintessence comes together 
and floats to the top of the water like an oil. The remaining earth is 
thrown to the bottom as useless, because it was this that held the 
medicinal virtue of the gold imprisoned which means, that it is of no 
value . 

This oil now floating on the top is separated with the help of the 
white feather of a pigeon that has been well washed and dampened and 
it is necessary to be careful not to lose any of it at all because it 
is the true quintessence of the regenerated common gold in which the 
three principles are reunited and can no longer be separated the one 
from the other. 

Be careful to note that it is not necessary to push the lapidif ication 
of the matter too far in order not to transform the calcined gold into 
a sort of crystal. It is necessary to control the external fire skill- 
fully so that it dries the saline humidity of the calcined gold, 
little by little, and thus changes it into a soft earth, which falls 
like an ash, because of its lapidif ication or more ample dessication. 
The oil thus obtained by separation is the tincture or the sulphur or 
the radical fire of the gold or the true coloration. It is also the 
true Potable Gold or the Universal Medicine for all the ills that 
afflict humanity. One only takes this at the two equinoxes in a 
quantity necessary lightly to color a soup spoon full of white wine or 
of distilled dew, seeing that a large quantity of this medicine would 
destroy the radical humidity of man and thus deprive him of life. 

This oil assumes on all possible forms and transforms itself into 
powder, into salt, into stone, into spirit, etc., by means of 
dessication by the help of its own secret fire. This oil is also the 
Blood of the Red Lion. 

The ancients symbolized it by the image of a winged dragon resting on 
the earth. Finally, this oil that cannot be consumed is the Golden 
Mercury. Once it is made, it is to be divided into two equal parts. 

One part is kept in the oily state in a small well stoppered flask of 

white glass. This is kept in a dry spot in order to use it to make the 

imbuings during the reigns of Mars and the sun as I shall describe at 

the end of the third procedure. The other portion is dried until it is 
reduced to a powder by following the same means that I indicated 
previously to dry the matter and coagulate it. Then this powder is 
divided into two equal parts. One part 

- 19 - 

is dissolved in proportions of one part to four of its weight of 
philosophical mercury in order to permeate the other parts of the 
powder that has been kept back. 

- 20 - 



It is here that all the philosophers begin nearly all their 
procedures. This has led many people into error. It is also during 
this procedure that the sulphur of the philosophers is united with 
their mercury. Nearly all the sages have called this last procedure 
"fermentation" considering that it is during this that the new sulphur 
will be dissolved again. It now ferments, it putrefies and is 
resuscitated by its new regeneration and now with a ten-fold power. 

This procedure differs from the two preceding ones. It is for this 
reason that the philosophers have divided it into seven degrees, to 
each of which they attribute a planet. 

In order to undertake this operation, it is necessary to take half of 
the powder that has been kept back, of which I already have spoken, 
and to dampen it little by little in view that the imbuing agent used 
in too great quantities will again dissolve the oil into a sulphur 
which will sublimate itself and float over the water. This hinders the 
union of the sulphur and the mercury, a serious fault that has 
hindered the success of many philosophers. The matter must therefore 
be imbued, drop by drop, by sprinkling, in order to bring about the 
reunion of the moon with the Sun of the Angels and thus forming a 
thick paste. 

The external fire used in order to make these imbuings is that of 
which we , have already spoken when we dissolved a quarter of the 
golden oil reduced to powder in the necessary quantity of 
philosophical mercury. This external fire is controlled by the 
quantity of the matter. 

It is now necessary to be careful to maintain the matter in an oily 
state by reiterated imbuitions as often as it is necessary to make the 
matter swell and have it start fermenting. Its solution is ended when 
the matter takes on a bluish color. This solution is called rebis or 
double mercury and the degree of mercury. This solution is immediately 
followed by fermentation. Then one stops the dampings and the external 
fire, allowing the internal fire of the matter work all alone and by 
itself until the matter has fallen to the bottom of the vase where it 
becomes as black as coal. It is then that the first degree called that 
of Saturn is started and that one distills without fire. The liquid 
that floats above the black matter in the same way described in the 
two preceding operations. 

The black matter is allowed to dry by itself and, as soon as it has 
reached a suitable state of dryness, one again permeates it with the 
exterior fire. The permeation is stopped when the matter begins to dry 
up. It is allowed to acquire a certain degree of dryness by itself and 
one goes on reiterating in this manner until the matter has reached 
its total putref iciation . Then the exterior fire is stopped in order 
not to damage the matter. 

- 21 - 

By means of the action of the matter' s proper fire this now, from 
being black, becomes gray without our having been obliged to apply the 
external fire. We have now reached the degree of jupiter. It is in 
this degree that one notices the colors of the rainbow appear. These 
are then replaced by a type of browny-black skin which acquires a 
certain dryness, divides itself, and becomes gray and one notices a 
small white circle on the walls of the vase. 

The matter having reached this point one could use it as a medicine. 

In that case, it is necessary to allow the matter to become quite dry 
and transform itself into a white powder by using the same procedures 
already described in order to obtain this color that will later be 
made to become red by the aid of the Secret Fire. 

This medicine would now have a virtue ten times as great as the first 
of which I have spoken. But if one desires to use it for the 
transmutation of metals, after having dried it well, one does not wait 
for it to become white but makes it such by amalgamating it to equal 
parts of a common commercial mercury which has been carefully purified 
by distillation, well sublimated and revivafied. This is the milk or 
the fat of the earth. 

In fact, when the common mercury is amalgamated with the matter the 
whole dissolves itself into a white liquid that looks like milk. It is 
fixed by the matter into a fixed salt by the action of its proper 
fire . 

Then one again starts the mercurial washings which make it as white as 
crystal. This is done with the help of seven different washings, 
during each of which revivafied mercury is added in equal parts as I 
have said above, then by a half, by a third, by a fourth, by a fifth, 
by a sixth and seventh parts of the weight of the fixed matter so that 
the weight of the matter will always be greater than that of the 
revivafied mercury .being used. 

But from the very first washing with equal parts it is essential not 
to let the fire go out, either by day or night, that is to say the 
imbuings of the distilled liquid which contains the fire of the 
matter, so that this latter does not become cold and lost. The 
compound is the Brass of the Philosophers which must be whitened by 
frequent dampings until the amalgamated mercury is fixed by our 
matter, supported by its proper fire. This ends the degree of Jupiter. 
In continuing thus, the brass takes on a yellowish color. Then it be- 
comes bluish and then the most beautiful white appears on top. Then 
begins the degree of the Moon. This beautiful white has the appearance 
of crushed diamonds. It has become a very fine and very subtile 
powder. One has now obtained the fixed white. A little of this is 
placed on top of a blade made of reddened copper. If it melts without 
smoke, that means that the tincture is sufficiently fixed. If the 
contrary is the case, it is necessary to add fire, continuing this 
until it has achieved its convenient degree of fixity and there one 
stops if one only wishes to make the white tincture. A one part of 
this transmutes one hundred parts of common mercury into a silver 
better than that of the mines . 

- 22 - 

But if one wishes to make a red tincture, the fire of the matter must 
be continued without having allowed it to become cold, that is if one 
wishes that it become red. 

If we continue to apply the external fire, the matter becomes very 
fine and of such a subtility that is almost unimaginable. For this 
reason the fire must be very well controlled so that the matter does 
not volatilize due to the strength of the fire which must penetrate it 
entirely, but that it stays at the bottom of the vase and transforms 
itself into a green powder. This is now the degree of Venus. 

Wisely continuing the external fire, the matter turns to a lemon 
yellow. This is the degree of Mars. 

This color increases in intensity and becomes the color of copper. 

When it has reached this point it can no longer increase in intensity 
by itself. Now it is necessary to have recourse to the golden red 
mercury, that is to say, to our oil that has been kept and to 
impregnate the matter with this oil until it has become red. Now 
begins the degree of the sun. 

In continuing the impregnations with the golden oil, the matter 
becomes redder and redder, then purple and, finally, of a brownish- 
red. This constitutes the salamander of the wise that fire can no 
longer attack. 

Finally, the matter is conjoined with the same aurific oil by imbuing 
it, drop to drop, until the oil of the sun is coagulated with the 
matter and that this latter, placed on a hot blade, melts without 
smoke. It is by this means that the red tincture is obtained. This is 
the fixed and coagulating gold of which one part transmutes a hundred 
parts of mercury into a gold that is better than that of nature. 


The two tinctures of which I have just written, the white and the red, 
can multiply, both in quality as well as quantity, so long as these 
tinctures have not been subjected to a common fire which has the 
effect of making them lose their radical humidity which fixes them 
into an earth resembling a sutone . In order to achieve the 
multiplication of the white and red tinctures, the third process has 
to be repeated in its entirety. 

The white and red powders have to be dissolved in the philosophical 
mercury. They must undergo fermentation and putrefaction as well as 
regeneration. In order to achieve success, the imbitions must be 
reiterated little by little. The fire must be directed and controlled 
in the manner already described. After this second multiplication one 
part is enough to make a projection on a thousand parts of mercury and 
transmute it into silver or into gold, depending on the color of the 
powder. These metals are perfect. 

The multiplication in quality is obtained by reiterating the 
philosophical sublimation which takes place when the pure is separated 
from the impure with the help of the Philosophical Mercury. The 
manipulations of the third process are to be punctiliously repeated 
after having dried and reduced into powder all the white oil with the 
help of the fire of the matter-if working in the white--and one part 
of the red oil if working in the red. This is in order to keep the 
other part to be used in the degree of Mars and the Sun, as I have 
already stated, if operating with the red. 

The multiplication in quantity is achieved by adding regenerated 
common -nercury as already stated. If one wishes to make the 
multiplication in quality at the same time, it is necessary to begin, 
as a general rule, by sublimating the matter. The pure must be 
separated from the impure, by total descication -- if working with the 
white -- or by half if working with the red. This by the help of the 
self-same fire which is to be controlled in the same manner as I did 
for the third process. This is to reduce them into a powder which we 
shall divide each into equal parts. One part will be dissolved in four 
parts its weight in philosophical mercury. This will serve to imbue 
the part that has been retained by absolutely reiterating the third 
operation . 

Should one so wish, these manipulations may be reiterated up to ten 
times. Each time the matter will acquire a tenfold power and will 
become so subtile that the last time, it will pass through the glass, 
becoming totally volatilized. Usually one stops at the ninth 
multiplication. At this point it becomes so volatile that at the least 
heat it pierces the glass and evaporates. As a result, it is usual to 
stop at the transmutation of one part in a thousand or ten thousand at 
the most, in order not to risk losing so precious a treasure. 

- 24 - 

At this point, I shall not describe the very strange processes I have 
done, to my great astonishment, both in the vegetable and the animal 
kingdoms as well as the means used for making malleable glass, pearls 
and precious stones more beautiful even than those of nature, 
following the procedure indicated by Zachary in using vinegar and the 
matter fixed in white, and grains of pearls and rubies fine powdered 
moulded and then fixed by means of the fire of the matter. I restrain 
my words in order not to perjure myself and seem here to fly beyond 
the boundaries of human credulity. 

Having finished my work, I took one hundred grammes of distilled 
mercury and placed it in a crucible. As soon as they began to smoke, I 
threw one gramme of my transmutating sulphur on top. It turned into an 
oil on top of the mercury and I saw this last successively coagulating 
more and more. I then increased my fire and thus pursuing made it 
stronger to the point that my mercury became perfectly fixed. This 
took about an hour. Having poured it into a little ingot— mould, I 
tested it and found it better than that of the mines. 

How great was my joy! I was carried away with rapture! Like Pygmalion, 
I fell upon my knees in order to contemplate my work and to thank the 
Eternal. I wept a torrent of tears! How sweet they were. How my heart 
was relieved! It would be hard for me here to describe everything I 
felt and the position in which I found myself. A thousand thoughts 
came simultaneously before my mind. The first would lead me to seek 
the King citizen in order to confess my triumph; another, that one day 
I would make enough gold to create various foundations in the town 
that had given me birth. Another thought made me want to see married 
as many young girls as there are sections in Paris, dowering each one. 
Another idea impelled me to find out the addresses of people poor and 
ashamed of their poverty and to go in person to their homes to bring 
them help. In the end, I began to fear that joy had cracked my wits. I 
experienced the need to use violence on myself and to take a great 
deal of exercise by walking in the country. I did this during eight 
consecutive days. Every few hours I would take off my hat and raise my 
eyes to the sky to thank heaven for having granted me such a blessing. 
The tears would flow abundantly from my eyes. Finally, I managed to 
calm myself and to realize how I would expose myself to danger if I 
undertook such endeavors. After having reflected soberly, I came to 
the firm decision that I would live unknown, without pomp, and 
restrain my ambition by giving happiness in secret without letting 
myself be known as a benefactor. 

I had told my wife of my success and promised to repeat the 
transmutation for her benefit. She urged me not to speak of this to 
anyone. It was Maundy Thursday 1831 at seven minutes past ten in the 
morning that I had achieved my first transmutation, alone. I lacked 
mercury and put off showing my wife until the day after Easter. From a 
gardener, I bought a laurel branch and a twig of evergreen. Having 
tied them together, I wrapped the whole in a sheet of writing paper 
and wended my way home where my wife was sitting by the window, 
reading. Kneeling in front of her, I placed my bouquet at her feet, 
saying: "Here it is at last, dear friend, placed at your feet. It 
crowns me at last, just as you and I are 


descending towards the grave. It has cost me thirty-seven years of 
painful labors and more than fifteen hundred nights without sleep. I 
have known so many humiliations, been overwhelmed with abuses, shunned 
by my friends, rejected by your family and mine. Finally, I lost the 
most interesting creature that one might possibly see. Yet, I have 
never ceased from being an honest man and cherishing you." My head 
fell upon her knees. I began to weep. 0 tears of regret at remembering 
my losses! Tears at the tribulations that I have known! Tears of joy, 
how sweet you were! You calmed my heart! I was reborn. I was a new 
man. Her eyes filling with tears, my wife lifted my head, saying: 
"Stand up, my friend, and stop crying." I placed my lips upon hers and 
this tenderly reciprocated kiss embellished the sweetness of my life 
and reanimated my mind beaten down by unhappiness . 

It was not enough to have admitted my success and to have placed the 
laurel at her feet. It was necessary to convince her and to perform 
the transmutation in front of her. 

I took a watchglass and put therein a small quantity of just bought 
distilled commercial mercury which was quite pure. On this I placed my 
transmutatory mercury in the oily state, not powdered, in the pro- 
portion of one part to a hundred. I shook the glass gently in such a 
way as to give the oil a circulatory movement. Joy fully we saw the 
mercury offer a most curious phenomenon. It coagulated into the color 
of the most beautiful gold. All I had to do was to melt it in a 
crucible and pour it off. Thus, to my wife's great astonishment, I 
demonstrated a cold transmutation. She then said to me: "Your success 
is the crown of your desires. If you wish to make me happy and help me 
forget the long chain of our miseries, let us spend the rest of our 
days unknown, without making any sort of show. Hide everything that 
might reveal your secret and serve as a lure to the greed of those 
whose ambition is insatiable. Hide from intrigue, from tyranny, from 
base humanity." 

I replied: "I have sworn that, even if melted lead were to be poured 
through my veins, I would take my secret with me to the grave. That is 
to say, the knowledge of the Matter, the Fire, and the Labors of 
Hercules. Before God I swear to you that I shall make you happy and 
fulfill all your desires. Let us hope that the Eternal will protect us 
from men who are filled with envy, from the vicious and the corrupt." 
You young people who are likely to read this work, do not let your 
wish to make a showing in the world and the lure of wealth urge you 
enter into the search for the Philosopher's Stone. If you could only 
know, as I do, the various hardships that I have undergone in order to 
reach this goal, you would draw back in fear. Start only if God allows 
you to meet a man who has already succeeded in making the Stone. One 
who will lead you by the hand from the beginning to the end. Push away 
from your mind in horror the idea of devoting yourself to Hermetic 
Philosophy. Whole secrets are unbelievably far more difficult to find 
on one's own. If, hoping to have better luck than I did, you reject my 
advice and are so fortunate as to succeed, never forget those more 
unfortunate than yourself. Above all, be discreet. Be miserly in what 
you spend to satisfy 

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your tastes and your passions, but be lavish towards the poor. 

Remember that the greatest happiness for a well-born heart is to make 
others happy without their knowledge and always keep the Eternal 
before your mind. 

Flee the corrupt of society. They have all the means to abuse your 
qualities. They would seem ruined by their promises that seem to flow 
from a good heart, but they become rich by making you their dupe. In 
few words, do not seek happiness in life from the two extremes of 
society. Seek it in the middle class, from honest industrialists. 
However, there are certain exceptions to be made and I would be an 
ingrate to judge otherwise. Never in my life shall I forget a well- 
born man to whom I have promised myself I shall give proof of my 
friendship . 

Estimable youth, may my life serve you as an example and my 
suggestions as lessons, and may they merit a few tears from your eyes 
to sweeten the long chain of miseries I have known. 

If you, Kings of the earth, knew the number of people who devote their 
lives to seeking the Philosopher's Stone, you would be astonished. If, 
also, you knew that during three or four hundred years only one or two 
men succeed in obtaining that which, in business, does not offer the 
product of a single gold mine in Peru or elsewhere. Instead of seeking 
out those who have succeeded and torturing them, you would cover them 
with goodness, grant them your friendship and help so that they could 
fully serve suffering humanity and allow you to share in the benefits 
of their discoveries. 

My fellow countrymen, if the Eternal allows me to leave you that which 
my heart wishes to be your fate, in gratitude do the following for me. 

.Transport my mortal remains to a chalky place facing a little turret 
on which lies a sorrowful emblem from an ancient war, at the base of 
which runs a rivulet whose source is a league from there and turns 
several mills. Have them covered only by a large block of hard granite 
which is common in the place where I was born and where I was married 
and on it put just the following inscription: 


Seeing that no law exists in any country forbidding the publishing of 
a discovery useful to society, I have had this work printed. I have 
also put into circulation gold, perfect by its weight, its color, its 
specific weight and fusibility. By what right would one wish to give 
preference to gold that is mined over that created by the 
philosopher's art, considering that this latter is the better. 

-k rk -k -k -k 

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